The English Electric Lightning was a fighter far ahead of its time and the prototypes spent years in development resulting in a fighter aircraft capable of Mach 2 and with an unforgettable appearance. The prototype Lightning first flew in August 1954, with the first production prototypes flying in October 1959. No 74 Squadron was the first RAF Squadron to receive the Lightning F1 in 1960.
This cover shows a F3 Lightning of No 111 Squadron on the apron at RAF Wattisham, to reflect the RAF's crackdown on the bright colour schemes we have chosen the polished paintwork scheme with some typically drab British weather. The cover bears 1s Royal Air Force 1918-1968 stamp showing SE5 and three Lightnings in formation the background cancelled with 50th Anniversary of the English Electric Lightning cachet.
Hand signed by Air Vice-Marshal George Black CB OBE AFC* FRAeS FIMgt
111 Signed, Numbered and Certified
George Black was Commanding Officer of No 111 Squadron from 1963-66 flying Lightning F3s. He was a Lightning pilot with No 74 Squadron from 1961-62, he was Chief Flying Instuctor 226 Lightning OCU 1967-69 and then Officer Commanding No 5 Squadron 1969-70.